Allison is a slightly OCD momma (yes, you do have to eat M&Ms in pairs of matching colors) who blogs over at Alli Ã¢â‚¬Ëœn Son. She’s a wanna-be photographer, gourmet chief and highly creative woman, all rolled into one.
One of the biggest things that I do to help save money, especially on our grocery budget, is to make as much as possible from scratch.
Yea, I know what you are thinking. I’m crazy.
Well, while that’s a good possibility, there’s a reason for my insanity. I can cross off tons of items from my weekly grocery list. All I need are the ingredients, an oven, and some time.
So what exactly do I cross off my list each week?
- Graham Crackers
- Pita Pockets
- Frozen pizzas or pizza dough
Instead I make wonderful things like Whole Wheat Bread (bread machine), Beer Batter Pizza Dough, Graham Crackers, Blueberry Muffins and Double Chocolate Chip Cookies. And those are just a few of my favorite recipes.
By far, the most loved recipe that I make just about every week, are crackers. Similar to Wheat Thins only better. Much better. Plus, I can control the ingredients that I use. There’s nothing in here that I can’t pronounce, no high fructose corn syrup, no artificial colors. I like to know what I’m feeding my family, so I avoid processed foods as much as possible.
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup wheat germ
- 3 tablespoons flax seeds
- 3 tablespoons honey (or sugar)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Mix the whole wheat flour, wheat germ, flax seeds and paprika. Add the oil, water, honey and vanilla, mix until smooth. I normally use my hands, it’s faster, and kind of fun. It the dough is too crumbly, add more water 1 tablespoon at a time, so it holds together. You don’t want it too wet though.
Preheat the oven to 400 º. Pop in your baking stone to warm with the oven. If using a baking sheet, lightly grease (no need to preheat the baking sheet). Divide the dough into 8 balls. Take one ball and roll it out on the stone. Get it as thin as possible, the thinner you roll it the crunchier your crackers will be. I use a pizza cutter to cut the dough into squares about 15 inches wide. Well, actually they usually end up more like rectangles, but the shape isn’t really that important. If you want, you can add the oddly shaped edges to one of the remaining dough balls. Or just bake them, and snack on them as you are cooking. Someone needs to test the after all. Sprinkle the dough lightly with kosher salt.
Pop the crackers into the over for 5-10 minutes. 8 minutes is just about perfect for me. You will know they are done when the edges are very lightly browned. The edges cook faster than the middle, so you may need to remove these and let the rest bake for a few more minutes. Keep a close eye on them, they can burn quickly.
Cool the crackers on the pan, this will help them crisp up even more. Once cool, store the crackers in an air tight container.
This recipe is a modified version of a recipe I saw on Kitchen Stewardship. One of the things I love about the original recipe is that it’s so easy to modify. I’ve made cinnamon sugar crackers and I’m thinking of trying some garlic and olive oil crackers. The possibilities are, seriously, never ending.
Beth’s Note: Okay, I have (sadly) never even considered making my own crackers at home, but I can not wait to try this, because they look absolutely delicious!! And that Beer Batter Pizza Dough… well, I’m all over that one, since I do love cooking with beer.